Editorial: Take survey to help design report card on schools

Published Mar 7, 2013 at 04:00AM

The Oregon Department of Education wants your opinion on its planned revision to the Oregon Report Card. That’s the one that arrives once a year to tell you how your child’s school and school district are doing.

You have till Sunday to let designers know what you like and don’t like about their plan. It’s the second survey and incorporates responses to an earlier version.

The survey is online at www.oregonreportcard.org and takes about 15 minutes, maybe more if you take the time to study the smaller details and make specific suggestions.

It’s anonymous, but first it asks your age, if you have children in Oregon public schools, your gender, marital status, highest education level and whether you work for the public schools.

The survey then offers you a look at the existing report card that you may remember seeing before. It’s chock-full of information, but it takes a serious reader to work through the small type and details.

The online type is too small for many readers, and the option to enlarge shows only part of the page, so this is challenging going. Once you work through it, the survey seeks your general comments, then asks a series of specific questions about what you find understandable and relevant.

Next up is the new design, which has some added information and is far more reader-friendly, although the online version still has type-size issues. Questions are similar to the first set.

Toward the end, the survey wants to know where you live, and we couldn’t find a choice that exactly fits Central Oregon. Take your pick from: Oregon Coast, Willamette Valley, Portland Metro, Rogue Valley, Cascade Mountains, Klamath Mountains, Columbia River Plateau, Oregon Outback and Blue Mountains.

Getting more people to take the survey has at least two benefits: It could lead to a better report card, but just as important, it’s a chance to let state-level decision makers know what you think is important.

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